[Home]->[Culture&Arts]->[The Historical Achievements of Zhejiang Culture]
    As for arts and literature, the poems and prose of Zhao Mengfu, Yang Weizhen, Liu Guan and Huang Jin occupied important positions in Yuan Dynasty. From Ming Dynasty, the folk arts developed in different forms like fictions, drama, story telling and ballad -singing as the result of the development of the commercial economy. About the period of late Yuan and early Ming dynasties, two Hangzhou native writers Luo Guanzhong and Shi Nai'an wrote the well-known saga novels the Romance of the Three Kingdoms and Heroes of the Marshes respectively. Western Zhejiang Ci Poem School represented by Zhu Yizun and Li Hu were famous for their traditional poems. And the prose written by Song Lian and Liu Jizhi, the essay by Zhang Dai, the articles by so-called Three Maos (i.e. Mao Qiling, Mao Jike, Mao Xianshu), Jiang Chenying, Hong Sheng and Zha Shenxing were also very important to China's literature.
    In the field of drama and folk arts, there were lots of Zhejiang native Za-Ju (a folk art form) writers like Fan Kang and Jin Renjie and some visiting writers like Guan Hanqin, Ma Zhiyuan, Qiao Ji, Zheng Guangzu and Qing Jianfu. Thus Hangzhou became one of the two centers of folk arts, the other being the capital Dadu (i.e. Beijing). As the birth place of Southern Operas, Zhejiang had two famous plays The Tale of Bowing in Salute to the Moon and The Tale of Killing the Dog ranked in the four-major southern opera plays in Yuan Dynasty. The Tale of Pi-pa by Gao Ming marked the highest peak of Southern Operas and was considered the founder of opera. Besides, there were lots of different tones developed in the opera performances like Haiyan tone and Yuyao tone in Ming Dyasty, Gaoqiang, Luantan, Tiao qiang and Tanhuang in early Qing Dynasty. Gradually, some local opera forms cam into being, such as Wu Opera, Shao Opera, Ou Opera, He Opera, Hu Opera, Yao Opera, Yong Opera and Yue Opera. The excellent playwrights like Gao Zecheng in Yuan dynasty, Xu Wei in Ming dynasty and Hong Sheng in Qing dynasty presented many classical plays like The Tale of Pi-pa, the Four Voices of Apes, The Ten Tunes of The Old Man With Bamboo Hat and The Palace of Eternal Life and contributed a lot to the folk arts.

Zhao Mengfu, Washing The Horses

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